Daughter still missing 38 years after Michigan mom heard car door slam in middle of night

6-year-old girl last seen in May 1985

Natasha Marie Shanes as a 6-year-old, followed by three age progression photos. (NamUs)

JACKSON, Mich. – It’s been 38 years since a 6-year-old Michigan girl disappeared, and her mother’s only clue is a sound that briefly woke her up in the middle of the night.

UPDATE: Police confirm new search of property hours after this story was posted

Natasha Marie Shanes was last seen on May 5, 1985, at her home in Jackson.

That night, her mother remembered waking up to the sound of a car door slamming outside her home. She fell back asleep, but when she went to check on her daughter in the morning, the 6-year-old was gone.

Natasha Marie Shanes (NamUs)

The front door of the home was wide open, according to the Michigan missing persons database.

NBC affiliate WILX spoke to Shanes’ mother, Susan Shanes, in May 2018 as she continued to search for answers.

Susan Shanes believes someone took her daughter from their home, according to WILX. Police said they didn’t find any signs of forced entry, and they ruled the case a non-family abduction.

Susan Shanes’ boyfriend was found dead two days after her daughter went missing. He had been shot, and his death was ruled a suicide, but Susan Shanes said she believes he was murdered, WILX reports.

Police haven’t yet been able to connect the two cases.

Multiple searches around the Jackson home and even in other states have uncovered no answers about Natasha Shanes’ disappearance.

Officials believe she disappeared between 1:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. May 5, 1985. She had strawberry blonde hair, brown eyes, and scars on her right cheek and forehead. It’s believed she was wearing blue jeans and a large blue and white shirt with a safety pin on it.

The age progression photos below show what Natasha Shanes would have looked like as a 30-year-old in 2009 (left), a 34-year-old in 2013 (center), and a 39-year-old in 2018 (right).

Age progression photos that show what Natasha Marie Shanes would have looked like as a 30-year-old in 2009 (left), a 34-year-old in 2013 (center), and a 39-year-old in 2018 (right). (NamUs)

Anyone with information is asked to call the Jackson Police Department at 517-788-4100.

Why is ClickOnDetroit covering so many cold cases?

We’re working to bring attention to as many unsolved and missing persons cases from around the state as we can. Our hope is that getting this important information out to the public will help generate tips for investigators and potentially lead to closure for the affected families. If you have a cold case you’d like us to look into, please let us know by using the form below.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.